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The Kite Runner
Transcript of The Kite Runner
By: Gurman, Niru, Navneet, Khmera & Sahiba
Section 3: Escape to - or in - America?
Section 3: Character Development
The Relationship Development
Amir no longer feels a need to
Does not feel neglected instead Baba shows Amir
“He hung up. We looked at each other. I burst into giggles. Baba joined in”
“America was different. America was a river, roaring along, unmindful of the past" (Hosseini, 144).
"'Your were happier there, Baba. It was more like home," [Amir] said. "Peshawar was good for me. Not good for you.'" (Hosseini 137).
Section 3: Chapter Summaries
March 1981, Baba & Amir Escape to America
Russian soldier at checkpoint asks for the woman, Baba stands up and starts a feud
Forced to stay in a basement for a week
Smuggled out of Jalalabad in a fuel tank
Kamal stops breathing and his father commits suicide
Amir gets married to Soraya
"I envied her. Her secret was out. Spoken. Dealt with. I opened my mouth and almost told her how I’d betrayed Hassan, lied, driven him out, and destroyed a forty-year relationship between Baba and Ali. But I didn’t"
"For me, America was a place to bury my memories. For Baba, a place to mourn his"
"A pair of steel hands closed around my windpipe at the sound of Hassan's name"
The betrayal of someone who is closely bonded to you may lead to unforgettable feelings of remorse, leaving you scarred with a guilty conscience for the rest of your life.
"My whole life, I had been 'Baba's son.' Now he was gone. Baba couldn't show me the way anymore; I'd have to find it on my own."
"Not a word passes between us, not because we have nothing to say, but because we don't have to say anything-that's how it is between people who are each other's first memories..."
"It may be unfair, but what happens in a few days, sometimes even a single day, can change the course of a whole life time, Amir" [Baba] sighed.
Takes place in 1980's in Fremont, California
The Kite Runner
Soraya is introduced and Amir finally finds the courage to talk to her
General Taheri throws away Amir's story
Baba is diagnosed with cancer
Amir is forbidden to tell anyone about Baba's diagnosis
Amir gets engaged to Soraya and she tells him of her past
"My heart stuttered at the thought of her. Soraya Taheri. My Swap Meet Princess"
"...Baba asked us [Amir and Soraya] to help him into bed...When we lowered him, he had Soraya turn off the bedside lamp and asked us to lean in, gave us each a kiss"
Points for Future Reference
- Chapter Summaries
> Chapter 10
> Chapter 11
> Chapter 12
> Chapter 13
- Thematic Statements
- Character Development
> General Characters
> Father & Son relationship
> The Taheris
> Soviet Afghan War
Summer of 1989, Amir's novel is released and some news about the war, "...the war raged on, this time between Afghans, the Mujahedin, against the Soviet puppet government of Najibullah, and Afghan refugees kept flocking to Pakistan."
General & Khanum Taheri
Challenge an Idea or Position
"Their sons go out to nightclubs looking for meat and get their girlfriends pregnant, they have kids out of wedlock and no one says a goddam thing. Oh, they're just men having fun! I make one mistake and everyone is talking
, and I have to have my face rubbed in it for the rest of my life" (Hosseini, 188)
The Traditional Afghan Woman
Symbolizes Afghanistan's collapse of law
Loss of decency and pride in Afghanistan
"Karim cleared his throat, dropped his head. Said the soldier wanted a half hour with the lady in the back of the truck" (Hosseini, 121).
The gift of the Grand Torino Ford Car
Symbolizes relationship change between Baba and Amir
"You'll need it for college" he said. I took his hand in mine. Squeezed it. My eyes were tearing over and I was glad for the shadows that hid our faces. "Thank you Baba" (Hosseini, 141).
to gas station attendee
“For me, America was a place to bury my memories. For Baba, a place to mourn his”
gains less respect
“My father is still adjusting to life in America,” I said, by way of explanation”
of Amir and his decisions
“I am not an ahmaq, so don’t play stupid with me”
“...We didn’t say anything. Just sat in the dark, listened to the tink-tink of the engine cooling, the wail of a siren in the distance”
Sweet gentle female later revealed as a run-away
“I suspected there were many ways in which Soraya Taheri was a better person than me. Courage was just one of them”
An honorable man to living on government welfare
“...And had never held a job in the U.S., preferring to cash government-issued checks than degrading himself with work unsuitable for a man of his stature...”
Easy-going to overprotective behavior
“You see everyone here is a storyteller…Do pass my respects to your father, Amir jan”
Amir takes sudden interest in a young lady by the name of Soraya
Baba and Amir form a father-son bond
Baba struggles to adapt in America
America becomes an escape for Amir
Baba completes his final duty as a father
Baba passes away
Amir learns about the Taheris'
Soraya gets taunted for her mistakes
Soraya and Amir try to conceive
Doctor states it's an "unexplained fertility"
“"Besides, I didn't bring us here for me, did I?” I reached across the table and put my hand on his. My student hand, clean and soft, on his laborer's hand, grubby and calloused… Six days a week, Baba pulled twelve-hour shifts pumping gas, running the register, changing oil, and washing windshields… The electronic bell over the door would ding-dong when I walked in, and Baba would look over his shoulder, wave, and smile, his eyes watering from fatigue.” (Hosseini, 137).
“…The first time I heard Baba moan in the bathroom. The first time I found blood on his pillow. In over three years running the gas station, Baba has never called in sick. Another first." “By Halloween of that year, Baba was getting so tired by mid-Saturday afternoon…" (166)
"...in Kabul, we snapped a tree branch and used it as a credit card. Hassan and I would take the wooden stick to the bread maker. He'd carve notches on our stick with his knife, one notch for one loaf of naan...That was it. No questions. No ID." (Hosseini, 135)
After the graduation, Amir and Baba are chatting in Amir's new Ford, Baba looks at him and says," 'I wish Hassan had been with us today,' "
Amir does not respond and he feels uncomfortable, "A pair of steel hands closed around my windpipe at the sound of Hassan's name."
After Baba's death, Amir tries to become less sensitive in order to stand up for himself as a strong man, " 'How are you,
General Taheri said. I gritted my teeth. Bit back the tears that had threatened all day."
• “Long before the
army marched into Afghanistan, long before villages were burned and schools destroyed, long before mines were planted like seeds of death and children buried in rock pile graves,” (Hosseini, 144)
• “Someone was screaming. No, not screaming. Wailing. I saw the passengers huddled in a circle, heard their urgent voices. Someone said the word "fumes." Someone else said it too. The wail turned into a throat-ripping screech… Kamal's father was sitting cross-legged in the center of the circle, rocking back and forth, kissing his son's ashen face” (Hosseini, 131).
- Literary Devices
- Changes That Occurred
- Literary Luminary
> Significant Quotes
> Text To Self
> Text to World
- Challenge an Idea or Position
- Points for Future Reference
Life becomes better
“Someplace with no ghosts, no memories, and no sins. If for nothing else, for that, I embraced America”
“My student hand, clean and soft, on his laborer’s hand, grubby and calloused. I thought of all the trucks, train sets, and bike sets he’s bought me in Kabul”
More mature as priorities change
“I would enroll in junior college classes in the fall, I told Baba the day after graduation”
Develops more faith in writing/ Gains independence
“But I would stand my ground, I decided.”
General Taheri's perception of Amir...
To triumph over difficult times, it is crucial for one to be surrounded by love.
When General Taheri catches Amir giving one of his short stories to Soraya, " 'You know,
...You are a decent boy, I really believe that, but-' he [General Taheri] sighed and waved a hand '-even decent boys need reminding sometimes. So it's my duty to remind you that you are among peers in this flea market.' " (Hosseini, 161)
"The general held me at arm's length and smiled knowingly, as if saying, 'Now, this is the right way-the Afghan way-to do it,
.' We kissed three times on the cheek." (Hosseini, 176)
Works Cited for Research and Quotes
" 'Tell him I'll take a thousand of his bullets before I let this indecency take place,' Baba said." (Hosseini, 122)
"...Baba asked us to help him into bed. Soraya and I placed his arms on our shoulders and wrapped ours around his back. When we lowered him, he had Soraya turn off the bedside lamp." (Hosseini, 182)
"I realized how much of who I was, what I was, had been defined by Baba and the marks he had left on people's lives. My whole life, I had been 'Baba's son.' " (Hosseini, 184)
"Now he was gone. Baba couldn't show me the way anymore; I'd have to find it on my own." (Hosseini, 184)
"The Soviet War in Afghanistan:
Timeline - Lesson Web. 13 May 2016.
Hosseini, Khaled. The Kite Runner. New York:
Riverhead, 2003. Print.